Beşiktaş stays atop Turkish Süper Lig
Beşiktaş maintains its three-point advantage atop the Turkish Süper Lig standings with five games to go in the season.
The Istanbul club beat Kayserispor 3-1 on April 24 to increase its points tally to 75 in 32 games, while its city rival Fenerbahçe won 3-2 over Kasımpaşa on April 25 to keep the pressure on Beşiktaş.
Fenerbahce scored the opener in the 15th minute when Ecuadoran forward Enner Valencia’s header beat Kasımpaşa goalkeeper Ertuğrul Taşkıran.
Visiting Kasımpaşa leveled the game in the 21st minute when Bosnian midfielder Haris Hajradinovic intercepted Fenerbahçe goalkeeper Harun Tekin’s inaccurate pass to score the equalizer.
Another header in the 40th minute gave Fenerbahçe a 2-1 lead with Hungarian central defender Attila Szalai as the scorer.
In the final minute of the first half, Valencia was fouled in the Kasımpaşa area, and Fenerbahçe was awarded a penalty kick.
Valencia converted the penalty successfully to make the score 3-1 for Fenerbahçe.
In the dying minutes of the game, Hajradinovic had a through ball on a quick counterattack as he dribbled the ball into the Fenerbahçe area.
Tekin left his goal to tackle him but fouled the Kasımpaşa midfielder.
Kosovar right back Florent Hadergjonaj scored from the penalty spot, making it 3-2.
Beşiktaş was missing key players like Atiba Hutchinson, Vincent Aboubakar and Cyle Larin against Kayserispor, but had a fast start to the match and Rashid Ghezzal successfully converted a penalty shot in the fourth minute.
Kayserispor immediately responded to Pedro Henrique when he scored with a bicycle kick in the penalty area.
Beşiktaş once again took the lead in the 13th minute, this time with Georges Kevin N’Koudou, who scored a well-placed shot inside the penalty area.
N’Koudou added another goal in the 65th minute to clinch the victory for the leader.
Third-placed Galatasaray won 1-0 against Antalyaspor on April 24, thanks to a 77th-minute strike by its Egyptian forward Mostafa Mohammed, who successfully converted Şener Özbayraklı’s low cross inside the six-yard box.
With the win, Galatasaray increased its total points to 69 to trail Fenerbahçe by three points.
The title race continues with mid-week games, with Beşiktaş visiting Rizespor and Galatasaray hosting Konyaspor on April 28, while Fenerbahçe travels to Alanyaspor on April 29.
The Week 38 competition starts on April 27 when Gençlerbirliği, fighting hard to avoid relegation, plays Hatayspor in an away game.